‘’Tripling the budget of the Erasmus+ programme’’: High goals set by Mariya Gabriel, the new Commissioner for Innovation and Youth
The current – and soon former – Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, Tibor Navracsics’ 5-year mandate is coming to an end.
The past 5 years have been full of changes and the lines have been moved regarding sport, physical activity and health.
Tibor Navracics will leave some inspiring and efficient initiatives in his legacy. The Tartu Call for a Healthy Lifestyle defined standards and goals in terms of physical activity and improving the overall health of Europeans. Most importantly the Call was signed by 2 other Commissioners (Commissioner for Health, Vytenis Andriukaitis, and Commissioner for Agriculture Phil Hogan), making it a statement of cross-sectoral cooperation. The lawyer contains 15 commitments to promote healthy lifestyles through sport and physical activity, food, innovation or research.
In a more tangible sense, Commissioner Navracics provided financial support for sport organisations through the Erasmus+ programme, which further encourage stakeholders to evolve towards defined goals and priorities.
Finally, Navracsics’ implemented the European Week of Sport, an event launched in 2015 to tackle the rise of inactivity in our societies and promote more movement and sport.
Following the accomplishments in sport, the new Commissioner for Innovation and Youth Mariya Gabriel will continue and deepen the work initiated by her forebearer.
Continuing the work of the previous mandate involves continuing the European Week of Sport every year in sight of getting more people more active and of promoting sport as a tool for inclusion and well-being. As the new Commissioner embraced her new role, she made a statement in front of the European Parliament stating that she’ll be a ‘’stubborn and untiring ally’’ regarding European funding. The goal to triple the current Erasmus+ programme budget is set and would represent a significant rise in funded Erasmus+ sport projects and the possibilities offered to European youth. This steep increase shouldn’t be overlooked since it proves the European Commission’s political desire to support and believe in our youth through the Erasmus+ programme and, therefore, in projects that organisations like Sport and citizenship are leading throughout Europe.
At Sport and Citizenship, we defend the social values of sport highlighted by Mariya Gabriel- as an extraordinary tool to improve social inclusion and well-being of citizens. We share this vision and disseminate it through the different projects and activities we are currently leading at a European scale. On the topic of social inclusion through sport, Sport and Citizenship is leading the FIRE project (Football Includes REfugees); while on the topic of physical activity promotion, the PACTE project (Promoting Active Cities Throughout Europe) is working at municipal level to help fight the sedentary crisis.
Our know-how and involvement on core topics have been rewarded with the granting of such projects. While the commissioner is changing, we’ll maintain our focus on Europe’s goals regarding sport’s social impact and how we can continue to be a leading organisation in the materialisation of the European guidelines.